45th President Donald Trump has warned against escalating the conflict in Ukraine, as the US and Germany start sending tanks.
On Wednesday, both the American and German governments promised that they would send dozens of battle tanks to Ukraine. 31 M1 Abrams and 14 Leopard 2 tanks are set to be delivered to the embattled nation.
“Putin expected Europe and the United States to weaken our resolve,” Joe Biden said. “He was wrong from the beginning and he continues to be wrong… This is about helping Ukraine defend and protect Ukrainian land. It is not an offensive threat to Russia.”
However, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters that in Russia, “everything that the alliance… are doing is seen as direct involvement in the conflict,” and that their involvement is only “growing.”
Former President Trump was firmly against the move. “FIRST COME THE TANKS, THEN COME THE NUKES,” Trump warned in a statement posted to Truth Social on Thursday morning. “Get this crazy war ended, NOW!” he added. “So easy to do!”
Despite Trump warning against escalating the conflict in Ukraine, their government is now set to push the West to hand over fighter jets. “If we get them, the advantages on the battlefield will be just immense,” said Yuriy Sak, an adviser to the Ukrainian Defence Minister. “It’s not just F-16s: fourth generation aircraft, this is what we want.”
Sak told Reuters that his government was optimistic that they would receive them. “They didn’t want to give us heavy artillery, then they did. They didn’t want to give us Himars systems, then they did. They didn’t want to give us tanks, now they’re giving us tanks. Apart from nuclear weapons, there is nothing left that we will not get,” he added.
“Many countries in the West think that if we were to supply Ukraine with all the hardware they asked us [for] in the first phase of the war, there would be a strong Russian reaction, including nuclear. You may call this a process of getting [Putin] accustomed,” said a senior US diplomat. Delivering fighter jets to Ukraine is “only a matter of when,” he told Politico.
In 2017, then-President Trump said it would be easy for him and the United States to be “tough on Russia,” but then there would be no possibility of “making a deal” with them.
“I want to do the right thing for the American people, and to be honest, secondarily, I want to do the right thing for the world,” Trump said. “If Russia and the United States actually got together, and got along, and don’t forget, we’re a very powerful nuclear country and so are they. There’s no upside [to fighting]… A nuclear holocaust would be like no other.’